This August, I traveled to Tobago with the Girls and Boys Varsity Soccer teams. We played multiple games against teams there as well as having the chance to work with some of the kids enrolled in a soccer program there. We met them at a huge soccer field where some of their families had come to watch from the bleachers. There was a very big age range, from kids in lower school all the way through to high school. We warmed-up with them, did some conditioning, practiced drills, did cool-downs, and then they each got to chose at least one item from our donations. We had brought soccer jerseys, shorts, shin guards, cleats, and soccer socks fro them to chose from. While we practiced with them, we got the chance to chat and get to know them better. We asked each other questions about everything from hobbies to school.
One little girl asked me “What is snow like?” I started telling her about how it looks when it falls from the sky, how there are so many different types of snow, and how it feels to touch it. By the end of our conversation, two of her friends had come over and enthusiastically asked me to tell them more about it. Until that point, I had never thought of snow as having any kind of value. It was always just something that happened in winter, and if you wanted to you could play in it. Of course, when I was younger I would get excited when I woke up and there was a White Christmas or if there was a Snow Day for school and I got to go sledding, but I had always taken it for granted. That night when we got back to out hotel, I thought about all the things I take for granted. I realized that there are so many things, from my pets and the fact that we can take them to the vet regularly, to being able to ski every winter in Vermont, to not having to think twice about buying new soccer gear when it gets worn out, to my phone which I use everyday, and even to the fact that I was able to go to Tobago at all. I thought about how one small conversation was able to have such an affect on me and now I cannot wait to go on more service trips and meet more people.